Jonathan St. Amant

Fullerton, California

My name’s Jon, and I like to draw wizards, monsters, derpy chubs, pinups, and ninjas. By day I’m a middle school art teacher, and by night I’m a dad/graphic novelist. I’m also an amatuer beekeeper and hobby aquarist. I’m inspired by video game RPGs, fantasy movies and novels, science fiction and outer space, manga and anime, my students, and the ills of society.

After receiving my BFA in Drawing and Painting and Art Credential from Long Beach State, I moved away from the fine art world and dove headfirst into the warm and supportive communities of cartoons, comics, and kid lit. I love to consume and create unconventional stories with relatable themes, but my absolute favorite thing is character design.
I live in Southern California with my wife (who collaborates with me on stories), my two boys, two cats, a bunch of fish, and bees.

What do you love to do for fun?

I love hiking, surfing, playing video games (especially RPGs), trying different foods, traveling, gardening, taking care of my aquarium, evangelizing about bees, collecting comics and graphic novels, and of course reading them. 

What is your favorite book as a child?

One of my favorite books as a child was Richard Scarry’s What do People do All Day? I loved finding all the details in the backgrounds. If you were savvy, you could even find Lowly Worm.




Art Process:

Typically, I like to sketch out an idea in my sketchbook first. For references, I’ll use Google, my own photos, or Pinterest. When I’m happy with my sketch or layout, I’ll take a photo of it and import it into either Procreate or Clip Studio. From there, I’ll ink over the sketch on a seperate layer with my favorite digital brush (for Procreate it’s Maxpack’s MaxU Sable Inker Soft). After that, I add colors and other effects on different layers.

Published books:

Critical Thinking: A Shepherd’s Guide to Tending Sheep, Kendall Hunt, 2000

Are You Mad? A Guide for Developmental Writers, Kendall Hunt, 2001

What a Trip, Kendall Hunt, 2005


Visit Jonathan at:

Awards and honors:

Teacher of the Year, 2011
Winner of the KCU logo/mascot contest 2021

Available for School Visits:

I visit the same school every day (I teach middle school art), but I am also willing to visit other schools as long as I can use a sick day here and there. I like to do step-by-step draw-alongs.

Desi St. Amant

Fullerton, California

Desi is a Latinx writer based in Southern California. As a child, she spent her free time climbing trees, chasing chickens, and exploring the lush foliage of her grandparents’ backyard while replaying scenes from her favorite movies. Today, she teaches high school English. As a member of SCBWI, she does monthly critiques with other experienced writers and shares exciting member news on their quarterly newsletter. She has had poems featured on Aaduna and Virgogrey Press. Currently, she writes middle-grade stories (fantasy and contemporary–sometimes a little of both). ​

When she isn’t writing or teaching, she is spending quality time with her family, playing board games, going on long runs, listening to podcasts, maintaining a residential beehive, and dancing traditional hula. ​Sometimes–if she’s lucky–she even gets sleep.

What do you love to do for fun?

I love hula dancing and making memes (it’s therapeutic).

What was your favorite book as a child?

I LOVED The Baby-sitter’s Club series and the Goosebumps series as a kid. Those books completely sucked me in and made me fall in love with reading.

Available for School Visits:

I love to visit schools and strive to make it as engaging as possible. Regardless of the book, I incorporate interactive components, such as honeycomb and beekeeping equipment for Three Bee Honey or a hula-dancing lesson for In the Middle of the Sea. I use multimedia (images and videos) of elements that inspired the story, have students play trivia games, and even lead writing exercises to help them find and develop their own stories.


Art Process:

I do a TON of brainstorming (and sometimes drafting) in a dedicated notebook for that story. Once I have an idea or concept, I create mind maps, lists, and freewrite to see what ideas come out in a short burst of time. As a parent and teacher, life is extremely busy, so every minute is precious. I have to steal time from the margins of my days (#momlife). For instance, when I garden or go on runs, I work through scenes in my head. While my kids are engaged in karate or baseball practice, I brainstorm chapters and draft dialogue. Finding a balance is a challenge, but if I am patient and steadfast, I can see some meaningful progress and growth.

One thing that is a must-have for getting into the “zone” is playing music while I write. I have to tune out all of the other background noise and let the music help me focus on the story. The selection depends on my mood or the mood of that scene in the story. If it is a happy/upbeat scene, instrumental Disney music is great. Other music I love to play in the background: LoFi HipHop Beats, any instrumental jazz (like John Coltrane), and Hawaiian music.